Buying a Home for first time can be a little “nerve racking”. Mortgage terminology that brokers use everyday can leave you scratching your head or shaking your head pretending that you know what they’re talking about. Here are some mortgage terms and definitions that you”ll be hearing when shopping for a first time home buyer loan:
Adjustable-rate loans, also known as variable-rate loans, usually offer a lower initial interest rate than fixed-rate loans. The interest rate fluctuates over life of loan based on market conditions, but loan agreement generally sets maximum and minimum rates. When interest rates rise, generally so do your loan payments; and when interest rates fall, your monthly payments may be lowered.
Annual percentage rate (APR) is cost of credit expressed as a yearly rate. The APR includes interest rate, points, broker fees, and certain other credit charges that borrower is required to pay.
Conventional loans are mortgage loans other than those insured or guaranteed by a government agency such as FHA (Federal Housing Administration), VA (Veterans Administration), or Rural Development Services (formerly know as Farmers Home Administration, or FmHA).
Escrow is holding of money or documents by a neutral third party prior to closing. It can also be an account held by lender (or servicer) into which a homeowner pays money for taxes and insurance.
Fixed-rate loans generally have repayment terms of 15, 20, or 30 years. Both interest rate and monthly payments (for principal and interest) stay same during life of loan.
The interest rate is cost of borrowing money expressed as a percentage rate. Interest rates can change because of market conditions. Loan origination fees are fees charged by lender for processing loan and are often expressed as a percentage of loan amount.